I just received a comment on an answer that started out with italicized text.

Writing to a section in an INI file

It will only replace anything up to the last valid key/value pair. Anything else beyond will be left as is. This explains the behavior...

In the global inbox, the word italic is shown in the message. I imagine it will do something similar to bold or code comments. I'm also seeing the same behavior in the Android app so it's not specific to the top-bar global inbox but apparently with how the notification text is generated.

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I'm not sure if this applies only to comments or answers, bounties or other non-system inbox notifications with user text.

Not really a problem for me but thought it was worth a mention. Bug?

  • Hmm, I wonder if the commenter initially wrote the comment with the word italic or did <italic>... then edited it to be correct. AFAIK, the inbox will show the original comment but not show any edits (and the comment was edited). Commented Feb 21, 2014 at 19:44
  • Could someone do me a favor and write a comment here starting with _italic text_, **bold text**, and `code` text? Just want to test my theory. Commented Feb 21, 2014 at 19:46
  • 1
    TEST in italics. TEST in bold. TEST in code. Commented Feb 21, 2014 at 19:48
  • 1
    @ObliviousSage: looks like it was edited out. Your comment just showed the text. i.sstatic.net/s79E9.png Commented Feb 21, 2014 at 19:50

1 Answer 1


All HTML is stripped from the comment excerpts, always. This includes any italic, bold, code, links, etc. Comments cannot have custom HTML, so all < and > characters get encoded to begin with. It's as simple as running a strip_html function on the comment.

If you want, go through your Stack Exchange inbox. You'll never find a comment with any sort of formatting on it. ;)

  • 1
    I guess my theory on it being edited was correct. @ObliviousSage's comment to me did not have any of the text I mentioned. i.sstatic.net/s79E9.png Commented Feb 21, 2014 at 19:52

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